War, and war’s alarms

Posted by lex, on February 20, 2008

Mark Steyn – he of the Macleans/Human Rights Commission kerfuffle – is in fine mettle today. Happy though he is at having received the grudging permission from cultural elites to publish things they’d rather not think about – while being declared an “alarmist” for having noticed them – he nevertheless asks, “What would it take to alarm you?

Sharia mortgages? Sure. Polygamy? Whatever. Honour killings? Well, okay, but only a few. The assumption that you can hop on the Sharia Express and just ride a couple of stops is one almighty leap of faith…

In another of those non-alarmist nothing-to-see-here stories, a British government minister tentatively raised the matter of severe birth defects among the children of Pakistani Muslims. Some 57 per cent of Pakistani Britons are married to their first cousins, and this places their progeny at increased risk of certain health problems. This is the only way a culturally relativist West can even raise some of these topics: nothing against cousin marriage, old boy, but it places a bit of a strain on the old health care budget. It’s not the polygamy, it’s the four welfare cheques you’re collecting for it.

“The ethos of relativism finds the demographic question so saturated in revulsions that it is rendered undiscussable.” The “multiculturist ideologue,” (British novelist Martin Amis) added, “cannot engage with the fact that a) the indigenous populations of Spain and Italy are due to halve every 35 years, and b) this entails certain consequences.”

What was it they said in the Cold War? Better dead than red. We’re not like that anymore. Better screwed than rude.

It’s not a crime in the West to hope for the best, to seek beauty rather than wallow in the alternative. Still, there is a time for all things:

`In our time the destiny of man presents its meanings in
political terms’ – 
Thomas Mann

How can I, that girl standing there,
My attention fix
On Roman or on Russian
Or on Spanish politics?
Yet here’s a travelled man that knows
What he talks about,
And there’s a politician
That has read and thought,
And maybe what they say is true
Of war and war’s alarms,
But O that I were young again
And held her in my arms!

– “Politics“, Wm. Butler Yeats


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